Worlds Apart

Young Adult

FANTASY:  When Keynis and his wife Nicolaté wake up in a strange place, their two-year-old daughter not with them, they must quickly adapt and find a way home. However, they quickly discover that they are not even in the same world. They are in a world called Nogatha now, and the people of Nogatha call Keynis and Nicolaté’s home Eden, rather than Earth. As they learn the ropes, Keynis and Nicolaté learn magic and fighting skills—each being inducted into different fighting groups of the realm where they encounter lizard men, dragons, gargoyles, giant rats, and more. It seems the only way home to their daughter is to help other people with their agendas—assuming they survive. 

Author Niki Bright’s “Worlds Apart” shows wonderful promise with world-building skills. The world of Nogatha is unique and creative. The settings and many types of creatures embodying the world are nuanced and distinct. The characters and plot, however, leave some room for growth. Keynis and Nicolaté in particular lack dimension and depth. Their relationship is underdeveloped and the though it is stated they need to get back to their daughter, that urgency is lacking. The plot has some interesting twists and turns that keep the reader in suspense. Unfortunately, this same plot is also a bit choppy in nature, rather than organic. It is often difficult to get a read on characters’ emotions, especially when dialogue attributions lacked variety: characters frequently “said” or “yelled” with little in between. Despite the lack of finesse in certain areas, the general storyline and world Ms. Bright created have a lot of potential, showing an abundance of creativity and imagination. 

Shailyn Rogers